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S. C., has been assigned to the Brady Laboratory, Yale University Medical School, New Haven, Conn., in connection with the Gas Defense Service of the Medical Officers' Training School.
DR. TREAT B. JOHNSON, professor of organic chemistry in the Sheffield Scientific School of Yale University, is cooperating in research with the chemical section of the War Department, and is acting as director of a field laboratory which has been established in Yale University for gas experimentation work. Associated with him in this work are: Dr. Arthur J. Hill, Dr. Blair Saxton and Dr. Sidney E. Hadley, of the Department of Chemistry, Yale University. Dr. Norman A. Shepard, of the department of chemistry, at Yale University, is working in conjunction with Professor Johnson during the summer months, and is carrying on experimental work dealing with the manufacture of explosives for the government.
Ar the request of the President, the Secretary of Agriculture has designated as members of the National Research Council Henry S. Graves, forester and chief of Forest Service; Karl F. Kellerman, associate chief, Bureau of Plant Industry, and Raphael Zon, chief Forest Investigations.
DR. RAYMOND F. BACON, of the Mellon Institute of Pittsburgh, now lieutenant-colonel, chief of the Technical Division on General Pershing's staff in France, while on a short visit to this country, was given an honorary doctor of science degree by the University of Pittsburgh.
AT the recent commencement of Yale University, Professor Emeritus Theodore S. Woolsey, of the Law School, in introducing Professor E. S. Morse for the honorary degree spoke as follows:
Edward Sylvester Morse-Born in Portland eighty years ago, a student with Agassiz, in the chair of zoology at Bowdoin, the pursuit of Brachiopods led Professor Morse to Japan. Three years in the Orient changed the current of his life. As collector, man of taste and man of letters, he has interpreted Japanese ceramics and Japanese char
acter with loving fidelity. As head of the Peabody Museum in Salem since 1881, he has built up a wonderful institution. As zoologist and ethnologist he has won an enviable name. A double life is his, the happy union of science and of art.
THE Angrand Foundation of France has awarded a prize of five thousand francs to Dr. Herbert J. Spinden, assistant curator in anthropology at the American Museum, in recognition of his memoir on Maya Art, published by the Peabody Museum of Harvard University. This prize is awarded once in five years for original investigations in the anthropology of North and South America. Dr. Spinden is engaged at present on reconnaissance work in South America.
DR. HENRY FAIRFIELD OSBORN, president of the American Museum of Natural History, has been elected an honorary member of the Royal Irish Academy.
DR. E. R. WEIDLEIN, of the Mellon Institute, has been appointed by President Nichols to represent the American Chemical Society on the Committee on the Supervision of Chemical Engineering Catalogue and as a member of the Perkin Medal Committee and the Committee on Cooperation between Industries and Universities in place of Colonel R. F. Bacon, who is now in foreign military service.
CHARLES T. KIRK has resigned the positions of professor of geology in the university and the state geologist of New Mexico, to begin consulting practise in geology with offices in Tulsa and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Ar a recent meeting of the Columbus Section of the American Chemical Society, Dr. W. D. Bancroft made addresses on "Gas warfare," and on "Contact catalysis."
A PORTRAIT bust of the late F. Massei, professor of otorhinolaryngology at the University of Naples, was recently installed in the hospital where most of his work has been done.
THE REV. GEORGE M. SEARLE, superior general of the Paulist Fathers from 1904 to 1909, and previously professor of mathematics and director of the astronomical observatory of
the Catholic University, died on July 8, at the age of seventy-nine years. Dr. Searle graduated from Harvard College in 1857 and held positions in the Dudley, Naval and Harvard observatories.
PROFESSOR STEPHEN FARNHAM PECKHAM, known for his work on the chemistry of bitumens, died on July 11, in his eightieth year. Professor Peckham was a graduate of Brown University in the class of 1861, and was professor of chemistry in the University of Minnesota from 1873 to 1880. Subsequently, he was engaged in the work of the U. S. Census, and was in the department of finance of New York City until his retirement in 1911.
LIEUTENANT VERNON KING, formerly scientific assistant in cereal and forage-crop insect investigations, Bureau of Entomology, United States Department of Agriculture, has died from wounds received when the British airplane in which he was serving as a flying observer was shot down. Lieutenant King was attached to the staff of the Wellington, Kans., field laboratory and was in charge of the Charleston, Mo., station prior to November 5, 1914, when he resigned to enter the British army.
EDUCATIONAL NOTES AND NEWS MOUNT UNION COLLEGE, Alliance, Ohio, has received $512,000 for endowment and equipment to increase its educational work. Successful completion of this fund was made possible by the gift of $50,000 by the friends of the late Captain Milton J. Lichty, M.D., of Cleveland. The professorship of biology will be named in his memory.
THE Journal of the American Medical Association states that the national government has modified the statutes of the University of Cordoba in accord with the general demand on the part of professors, students and graduates, giving them a more democratic control. The Academia will retain only its scientific functions, while the direction of the different de
partments of the university will be in the hands of a managing board for each. The members of these consejos are to be elected for a term of three years at a general assembly of all the professors.
BECAUSE of almost continuous absence of Dr. Richard P. Strong since the outbreak of the war, the department of tropical medicine of the Harvard Medical School, has been placed in charge of Dr. Andrew W. Sellards, whose title as associate is now made that of assistant professor.
PROFESSOR C. A. SISAM, of the University of Illinois, has accepted the headship of the department of mathematics in Colorado College. He has been connected with the University of Illinois since 1906.
DR. GEORGE R. BANCROFT has resigned the professorship of chemistry and physics in Transylvania College, Lexington, Ky., to accept a position at the University of Kentucky as assistant professor of organic and physical chemistry.
DR. CHARLES T. BRUES has been promoted to be assistant professor of economic entomology in Harvard University.
DISCUSSION AND CORRESPONDENCE
A MUSICAL, CRICKET-LIKE CHIRPING OF A GRASSHOPPER
IN August, 1917, I made frequent trips to a certain swamp near Spring Hill, Vinson Station, Va., to study the stridulating habits of a colony of locusts, Neoconocephalus Exiliscanorus (Davis), which have been located here for several years. The usual notes of the cone-headed grasshoppers (Neoconocephalus) are quite devoid of any musical tone such as is characteristic of the chirpings and trillings of the crickets. In truth, the sounds produced by these insects are usually harsh, lisping or rasping noises which may be intermittent or prolonged, depending upon the species. The stridulations of the cone-headed grasshopper (N. Exiliscanorus) are of the intermittent type, and are brief, insistent phrases-zeet— zeet-zeet-zeet-zeet, delivered very regularly
for a certain period, followed by a brief pause before the performance is repeated. The notes of the members of the particular colony located near Spring Hill appeared to be rather louder than the notes of some individuals of this species which I have heard elsewhere.
On the evening of August 21, I again visited this colony, the individuals of which were just beginning their usual nocturnal stridulations. While listening to their rather harsh, unmusical phrases, a loud, musical chirping started up, low down in the herbage and underbrush nearby. It was similar to the chirping notes of a cricket, and possessed the true tonal quality characteristic of the notes of such crickets as are found in the genera, Gryllus, Ecanthus, or Orocharis. I was actually somewhat startled by the loud, unfamiliar chirping, for I could not think of any species of cricket in this locality which I had not determined. After a careful search with a pocket flashlight, I located the musician, which, much to my surprise, proved to be the cone-headed grasshopper (N. Exiliscanorus). With the exception of the acquired cricket-like, musical pitch or tonal quality, the notes were delivered in a manner typically characteristic of this cone-headed grasshopper. I captured the insect and compared its tegmina with the tegmina of individuals stridulating in the normal manner, but could determine no particular differences in the stridulating field or the stridulating veins. A microscopic examination of the character of the teeth of the stridulating vein revealed nothing which could be considered responsible for the unusual character of stridulation.
It has always been a mystery to me why the crickets as a class produce stridulations characterized by the musical qualities of pitch and timbre, while the majority of the musical Orthoptera produced only lisping or harsh, strident, unmusical sounds such as are characteristic of the species of Conocephalus, Orchelimum, Neoconocephalus, Atlanticus, Amblycorypha, Pterophylla, etc. The question of the origin and evolution of the musical impulse as a dominant feature in the development of the Orthoptera must ever excite the
mind to wonder. In this class of insects, sound has become an almost constant and irrepressible feature of their lives. How did the tonal quality become acquired and why is it so constantly associated with the crickets? It is evident that this more musical quality may arise suddenly in the individuals of a species which normally produce only "noise," so to speak, as in the case of the cone-headed grasshopper mentioned. If such a change were associated with the germinal constitution so that it became a transmissible feature and not a merely accidental or temporary individual feature, it would suggest how a musical, cricketlike chirp could arise from a mere rasping note or "noise," and persist as a racial feature. If this were true, the sudden acquirement of the character would be in the nature of a mutation or discontinuous variation, and it is possible that evolutionary steps of this sort have actually occurred in the specialized development of stridulatory powers among the Orthoptera.
WASHINGTON, D. C.
H. A. ALLARD
Field Book of Insects. With Special Reference to those of Northeastern United States. Aiming to Answer Common Questions. By FRANK E. LUTZ, PhD. G. P. Putnam's Sons. ix +509 pp. 101 plates.
The text-books dealing with American insects are all excellent but are comprehensive and prepared for the use of students and advanced workers. None of them, however, cover just the field of the present volume. In European countries, where there are many more persons interested in the collection and study of insects than in America, a large number of small well-illustrated volumes are available, where the collector can identify his specimens as well as obtain information regarding their habits. These volumes are of such size that they can be slipped in the pocket and taken into the field for ready reference. There are "Field Books" dealing with American plants and birds, but this is the first one dealing with insects.
Although the "Field Book of Insects covers a large field, it is convenient in size, 7x41x1 inches, weighs about sixteen ounces, and while printed from small type, the printing is well spaced, clear and easily read. There are 101 plates, of which twenty-four are colored. The plates contain 800 figures, which are well drawn and will be of great aid in the identification of specimens. While the majority of the figures are of adult insects, there are many of nymphs, larvæ and pupæ, illustrating the common and peculiar types.
In the choice of the species to be described and figured, the author has evidently made use of his museum experience. The selection is excellent and includes all the common and anomalous species most likely to be met with by the amateur and general collector in the region covered, the northeastern United States. The discussions are interesting and concise. The introduction includes a general discussion on the number of kinds of insects, the scientific names of animals, growth and metamorphosis, anatomy, collecting and breeding of insects, identification and the control of injurious species.
There follows a brief account of the near relatives of insects, but confined in great part to spiders and their webs. The insects are divided into about twenty orders, of which the greater part of the text and a considerable number of the plates are devoted to the Hemiptera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, Diptera and Hymenoptera. While it is evidently intended that the figures should be used mainly for the identification of specimens, in the orders named there are analytical tables for the identification of families and genera and, in certain cases, species. The discussion of the Hymenoptera, the last order treated, is followed by a consideration of the abnormal growths or galls produced upon plants by insects. About the only way in which such structures can be identified is by the use of figures and the last seven plates contain figures of the common galls made by mites, Homoptera, Lepidoptera, Diptera and Hymenoptera. In interesting young people, those who tramp and camp, the student of
nature, and the farmer who observes the things about him, this book will prove of great value. ALEX. D. MACGILLIVRAY
NOTES ON METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATOLOGY
RAINFALL OF THE UNITED STATES
MUCH progress has been made in accurate mapping of the rainfall of the United States,
and in careful discussion of our now extensive records. In 1917, the Weather Bureau finished the construction of many maps designed to bring out the rainfall features of most importance in agriculture. Possibly by the end of this summer these will be published as a section of the Atlas of American Agriculture. In fact, the map of average annual precipitation has already appeared.1
The most important of the unpublished maps are those of the monthly and seasonal rainfalls, and of the frequencies of rains of different intensities. Since the records of several thousand stations have been used, and since the isohyetal lines have been drawn with a careful consideration of topography, these maps show in much greater detail and accuracy than ever before the distribution of the rainfall of the United States.
The distribution has been ably discussed by Professor R. DeC. Ward.2 The rainfall of the United States east of the Rockies seems to be from moisture originally coming from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean; and, judging from the distribution of rainfall, the Gulf of Mexico is of primary importance. From the heavily watered north Gulf coast, where the rainfall is 60 inches a year, the amount decreases inland, slowly to the north, but rapidly to the northwest and west. East of the Appalachians the moisture from the Atlantic keeps the country well supplied-the rainfall being generally 45-50 inches in the south, and 40-45 in the north. The effect of the Appalachians is to increase the rainfall on the borders but to decrease the rain in the interior of the mountain region. Thus there
1 See the reproduction in the Mo. Weather Rev., July, 1917, Vol. 45, Pl. 76. 2 Ibid., pp. 338-345.
are local maxima of over 50 inches on the slopes well exposed to moist winds; but minima of less than 40 inches in the valleys. The extremes are over 80 inches on the exposed southern face of the Appalachians where North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia meet; and under 30 inches in the enclosed Champlain valley. Without the abundant moisture which sweeps northward unobstructed all the way from the Gulf of Mexico, the Great Lakes could hardly exist. Since they are present, they exert a local effect on the climate; and increase the rainfall by perhaps 5 inches, making the total thereabouts 35 inches. Contrasts between windward and leeward shore rainfalls are not marked, for the light precipitation which occurs frequently with the cool westerly winds, and the heavy rainfall which comes with the less frequent easterly winds nearly balance. Of the wellwatered eastern half of the United States, Professor W. M. Davis says:
The world hardly contains so large an area as this so well adapted to civilized occupation.3
West of the 95th meridian, the rainfall lines run north and south instead of east and west, as is the case to the east. At about the 100th meridian the rainfall becomes too small for ordinary methods of farming, being less than 20 inches in the north and under 25 inches in the south. From here west to the Rockies the rainfall decreases almost to ten inches; so the Great Plains region is one of grazing, dry farming, or local irrigation. In the outlying highlands and the mountain front, the rainfall again rises to 15 or 20 inches. In comparison with the heavily forested east this open country was easily-in some areas, too easily-settled; but the fluctuations of rainfall in this marginal region make man's hold too precarious to favor a dense population.
The Interior Plateau and Basin region, walled off by high mountains, is arid. The rainfall of the northern Rockies exceeds 40 inches in Idaho, but is under 30 inches else3Elementary Meteorology," Boston, 1894, p.
where; the central Rockies locally enjoy more than 30 inches, but the high plateaus of the south receive but 15 to 25 inches. The lower mountains and plateaus and the valleys in the rain-shadow of the Cascades and Sierras are arid, with less than 10 inches of rainfall. This aridity becomes extreme in the south; there, with lesser cyclonic activity, and greater heat, the rainfall averages under 5 inches a year. Water for the irrigation of these driest regions is not altogether lacking, for, except in the south, they occur in the lee of the wettest mountains. Thus, the Cascades with rainfall 10-15 times as great as that in the Yakima valley, supply abundant water for this great orchard.
The cause of aridity in the rain-shadow of the Cascades and Sierra Navadas is apparent from a glance at the excessive rainfall on the western side of the coast ranges and these higher mountains. South to the 40th parallel the rainfall exceeds 80 inches, and on the west flank of the Olympics, even 120 inches. In California, the rainfall decreases rapidly southward, while on the mountains of southern California, the amounts are under 30 inches, and on the coast at San Diego even less than 10. The cause of the heavy rainfall is the rapid cooling of the moist air which is blowing almost continuously from the Pacific. This cooling is brought about (1) by the expansion of the air as it is forced to rise over the obstructing mountains; (2) by the similar cooling as this air rises in the numerous cyclones; and (3) by cooling to the cold ground in winter. Diminishing cyclonic activity and increasing warmth of the land cause a southward tapering of the rainfall. The trough between the coast ranges and the higher mountains on the east receive only half as much rainfall as the mountains on either side; thus in many parts of the valleys irrigation is necessary particularly in the San Joaquin valley and in southern California. Water is supplied abundantly by the slow-melting mountain snows. Unlike the eastern United States, then, the western United States has sharp contrasts of rainfall in short distances; and because the rainfall is excessive on the moun